Grayscale slams SEC over leveraged Bitcoin ETF approval

by Jul 11, 2023CryptoNews0 comments

Grayscale, the largest digital asset manager in the world, has expressed its frustration with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) over its approval of a leveraged Bitcoin exchange-traded fund (ETF). The SEC recently approved the ProShares Bitcoin Strategy ETF, which allows investors to gain exposure to Bitcoin futures contracts with up to 1.5 times leverage. The ETF is the first of its kind in the U.S. and has attracted over $1 billion in assets under management since its launch on December 6. However, Grayscale’s lawyers have argued that the SEC’s decision is inconsistent and unfair, as it has repeatedly rejected applications for spot Bitcoin ETFs, which would track the price of Bitcoin directly. Grayscale’s lawyers have filed a comment letter with the SEC, urging the regulator to reconsider its stance on spot Bitcoin ETFs and to approve Grayscale’s own application, which was submitted in October. The lawyers claim that spot Bitcoin ETFs are more transparent, efficient and beneficial for investors than leveraged Bitcoin futures ETFs, which are subject to higher fees, risks and volatility. They also argue that spot Bitcoin ETFs would provide more liquidity and price discovery for the Bitcoin market, as well as reduce the potential for market manipulation and fraud. The lawyers accuse the SEC of applying a double standard and creating an uneven playing field for different types of Bitcoin ETFs. They say that the SEC’s approval of leveraged Bitcoin futures ETFs contradicts its own concerns about investor protection, market integrity and financial stability. They also question the SEC’s legal authority and rationale for approving leveraged Bitcoin futures ETFs, while denying spot Bitcoin ETFs. The lawyers urge the SEC to act in the best interest of investors and the public, and to approve spot Bitcoin ETFs as soon as possible. Grayscale is not the only entity that has criticized the SEC over its treatment of Bitcoin ETFs. Several industry experts and lawmakers have also expressed their disappointment and confusion with the SEC’s decisions, and have called for more clarity and consistency from the regulator. The SEC has not yet responded to Grayscale’s comment letter or to other similar requests. The regulator has said that it will continue to review each Bitcoin ETF application on a case-by-case basis, and that it will consider various factors, such as market structure, investor demand and regulatory compliance.

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